The global economic cost of counterfeiting and piracy is expected to soar by 2022 according to a new report commissioned by the ICC and INTA.
The Economic Costs of Counterfeiting and Piracy is a report by European consultancy Frontier Economics, commissioned by the Business Action to Stop Counterfeiting and Piracy (BASCAP) of the International Chamber of Commerce and by the International Trademark Association (INTA).
The report, presented in February 2017, builds on previous studies by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) on counterfeiting and piracy in cross-border trade. It does this by including the value of domestically produced and consumed counterfeit goods, the value of digital piracy and wider economic impacts – ranging from reduction of foreign direct investment to fiscal losses and costs of crime – as well as job losses. Frontier Economics goes as far as to forecast what the global economic impact of counterfeiting and piracy will be in 2020.
Key findings are that counterfeiting and piracy are getting worse: its global scale is large, has grown since previous estimates and is expected to continue to grow.
The report’s estimate is that the total value in US$ of counterfeit and pirated goods in 2022 will climb to somewhere between 1.9 and 8.81 trillion, up from 923 billion-1.13 trillion in 2013.
The wider economic and social costs are expected to rise from 737-898 billion to 1.54-1.87 trillion. Job losses are estimated to rise from 2-2.6 million to 4.2-5.4 million.
The figures are huge and certainly troubling. They also indicate that intellectual property is becoming increasingly central to the value of products, companies and of the world economy in general.
Therefore while the study should be heeded mainly by policy makers to increase their efforts to protect and enforce intellectual property rights, it should also tell companies that intellectual property rights are already essential for their existence and are probably to become more so.